Monday, August 15, 2011

Video on Solidarity Day-Maharashtra.

Senior Citizen Blasts Government of Maharashtra for their Apathy towards Elderly

Posted by Sailesh
78yrs young RTI & Senior Citizen Activist Mr.Manshuklal.V.Ruparelia talks about the problems of Senior Citizens and the State Government Neglect and lack of Political Will for the Policy and Welfare of Senior Citizens. This One Man Mission Pledges to Fight till Last Breath to bring Justice and Dignity to Senior Citizens in India and State of Maharashtra. We Salute his Commitment and Energy for the Cause. Senior Citizen's National Solidarity Day: 16th August, 2011. This is Silver Inning Foundation presentation. .

Watch this Video here, just spare 6 minutes: Embedded media -- click here to see it.

We also request you to share this video among your members and friends.

State of Maharashtra- Solidarity Day by Senior Citizens on 16-8-11.

Website: Email:  M.09821732855.

M.V.Ruparelia, A 503 Rashmi Utsav, Near Jangid Estate & Vijay Park, Mira Road (East), Dist. Thane-Maharashtra-401107.
BELOVED CHIEF MINISTER Honorable Shri Prithviraj Chavan
Date: 14th August 2011.
Honorable Shri Prithviraj Chavan
Chief Minister of Maharashtra
Mumbai: 400032.
Sub:  Memorandum for Senior Citizens Issues.
Ref: (i)Senior Citizens National Solidarity Day: 16th August 2011
        (ii) My letter & E/Mail dt 14-6-11 for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day to you by name not yet replied.                

Respected Sir,

We are submitting this Memorandum on behalf of 100 Lakh (1 crore )Senior Citizens (60+) in Maharashtra State, about 66% of whom are poor, 90% are without any social or health security and over 20% are lonely, surviving under threat of criminal attacks.  Even after 50 years of formation of the State of Maharashtra, very little has been done by the Government to improve the quality of life of its Senior Citizens, who during their young and adult age have played an important role in development of the State and the Country.  While appreciating the good work like implementation of Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (Shravan Bal Yojana) and fare concession to 65+ Senior Citizens in State Transport Bus Fare, Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2010, we would like to say that a lot remains to be done by this progressive State of Maharashtra.

You will agree with the fact that elders have waited for years on end to get attention from our rulers but all that we have received is indifference towards our issues. While we are keen to play our role in the development of our Country and the activities for the welfare of community, we also demand that our concerns must be addressed.

Last year on 16th August 2010 we (JAC) organized all India ‘Senior citizens National PROTEST Day’ and in every District and Taluka of Maharashtra, Joint Action Committee (JAC) of Senior Citizens was formed by 23 Organizations/ Federations, Associations, NGOs working for Senior Citizens to protest against continuous neglect and ignorance by the central & state government.  In Mumbai, around 2000 Senior Citizens assembled at Azad Maidan at 2 pm on 16th August to raise their concern with government authority. The delegation met state minister for Social Justice, the Hon. Minister Shri Sachin Ahir and submitted the memorandum and he gave patient hearing and appreciated our effort as united forum for Elder Right. On this occasion the Hon. Minister accepted most of our demands in principle including the formation of Senior Citizens Commissionerate. In this meeting, he asked Shri J.N. Rathod, the  then Dy. Secretary to call an urgent meet and discuss various issues including implementation of NPOP and Maintenance & Welfare of Parents & Senior Citizens Act.
Further the delegation of JAC was also called for meeting with Governor of Maharashtra Shri K. Sankaranarayanan at Raj Bhavan, Mumbai on 7th Sep 2010. The Governor assured the delegation that he would take up the issues raised by the delegation with the Chief Minister.

On  request by Governor on 17th Sep 2010 Shri Satish M. Gavai, the then Principal Secretary ,Social Justice, Special Assistance, Government of Maharashtra called the meeting of Joint Action Committee and promised to get approved the draft NPOP by the cabinet and implement the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act immediately.

Since then, though we had couple of meetings with Social Justice Ministry, nothing concrete action has emerged except formation of Tribunals for Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2010 and promice to declare State Policy for Senior Citizens/Older Person before 15-8-11.
Please note that in state budget 2011 -12, Maharashtra Government has once again shown its apathy towards its 100 lakh Senior Citizens. The state government has been continuously neglecting and ignoring its Senior Citizens. We strongly condemn the step motherly treatment towards Senior Citizens by Government of Maharashtra.
This year too on 16th August, 11, we have National and State Senior Citizens National Solidarity Day to once again highlight our issues and to demand concrete action from State government. We request the Government to consider the following pending demands urgently and concede to them.
  1. Declaration of State Policy on Senior Citizens -
Senior Citizens Organisations had jointly presented the Draft of State Policy on Senior Citizens (Older Persons) in 2002 but the State Govt. in 2004 declared a 1 ½  page State Policy, which too remains mostly unimplemented.  We again met at Yashada and resubmitted the Draft to the then CM in 2009 but no action appears to have been taken to declare the State Policy. The Union Govt., declared the National Policy on Older Persons in 1999 and it is unfortunate that even after 12 years, the Maharashtra State does not find time to declare its State Policy. We have been given assurance by Socail Justice ministry in few meetings since last 16th August 2010 that the Policy will be declared before 15th August 2011. Please declare it immediately.
  1. Formation of State Council of Senior Citizens and Commission -
For effective promotion and coordination of the concerns of Senior Citizens, the Government should form a State Council of Senior Citizens under the Chairmanship of the Minister of Social Justice with representatives from concerned Govt.  Departments and representatives of prominent Senior Citizens Federation, Organizations, NGOs working for Senior Citizens (list of some of them is shown in margin of first page), Social Science Institutions and Media, as members. A State Commission/ commissionerate for Senior Citizens should be established for implementation of the State Policy all over the State and also implementation of Acts like Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act and other Policy and Acts concerning the Senior Citizens. This was agreed by Hon. Minister Shri Sachin Ahir in one of the meetings.
3.   Implementation of Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007.
We are thankful to the Government of Maharashtra that they have adopted the Act, framed the Rules and notified it in on 2010. The Act needs to be fully operational all over the State immediately.  We, therefore, request the Government to give publicity to the Act, to create awareness about the Act, particularly in rural areas.  As provided in this Act, work to establish an Old Age Home in each District should also be started immediately. 
4.   Establishment of Multi-Service Day Care Centers.
There are 23 Municipal Corporations out of which only 2 (Pimpri–Chinchwad and Navi Mumbai) have started good numbers of Day Care Centers for Senior Citizens. To remove loneliness, to utilize their spare time for useful social activities and for improvement in physical and mental health, Senior Citizens need Multi-Service Day Care Centers in all Cities, towns, and large villages. The Govt. should make provisions so that all Municipal Corporations, Municipalities and Panchayats provide Day Care Centers in all parts of the State. We also demand to make provision to start Dementia Day Care Centers in big cities and at District and Taluka level. 
5.   Senior Citizens Cell in Municipal Corporations -
For effective implementation of State and Central Govt. Senior Citizens Schemes and also to address specific issues and concerns of our Elders, we Demand that all Municipal Corporations should have a Special Cell for Senior Citizens as is provided in Navi Mumbai.  All Municipal Bus Services should also provide concession in fare for Senior Citizens.  Navi Mumbai Municipal Transport provides 75% concession to Seniors.                                                                                                                                
Helplines like AASRA of Hyderabad Municipal Corporation should be started by all Municipal Corporations to protect the Senior Citizens from anti-social elements and their own family members. 
6.   Representation on Anudan Samities –
The State Govt. has Schemes like Shravan Bal Yojana, Sanjay Gandhi Niradhar Anudan Yojana, Indira Gandhi Niradhar Bhoomiheen, Vidhawa Mahila Anudan Yojana, etc. for giving pension to poor Senior Citizens.  But in many places, the needy Citizens do not get the pension. We request that representative of Senior Citizens Organizations and NGOs should be included in these Anudan Samitees as an unofficial member. 
7.   Health Insurance For Middle Class Senior Citizens -
Health Care is very vital necessity of all Senior Citizens but Health Care costs are so high that they cannot afford to have Health Insurance.  We request that Rashtriya Swasthya Vima Yojana of the State should be modified to cover the middle class Senior Citizens with the BPL families and give them Health Insurance cover.  The APL (Above Poverty Line) Senior Citizens would be able to pay moderate premium for such Insurance Cover. We also request the number of family members should not be restricted to 5 (five). Honorable Minister of State Shri Sachin Ahir had promised us of State-level Health Insurance Scheme for Senior Citizens (Rajiv Gandhi Jeevandayi Yojana). 
8.   Give Benefits to 60+ Seniors (Not 65+) .
Central Government in Budget 2011-12 has accepted Senior Citizen as 60+ for BPL Pension & Exemption of Income Tax also.  We request that the State should give financial benefits to all 60+ Senior Citizens in Shravan Bal Yojana, ST bus fare concession, etc.  The bus concession should be extended to all including Volvo Buses. 
      9.   Improvement in Vriddhashrams and help for Residents.
The condition of most of the Old Age Homes in the State is far from satisfactory. The Govt. should appoint a Regulatory Authority for implementing and monitoring minimum norms/standards of service in all Vriddhashrams with representation for Senior Citizens Associations / NGOs in District Committees. We also demand adequate funds to be given to run destitute old age homes. Voting right, old age pension and UID should be given to the Residents of Old Age Homes. 
10. Old age Pension -
The Govt. of India has announced to pay Rs.500/- p.m. to 80+ BPL Senior Citizens.  The State Govt. should contribute Rs.500/- to pay Rs.1,000/- to him.  Under Shravan Bal yojana also the total pension amount should be raised to Rs.1,000/- p.m. for BPL poor. 
      11. Health Programme for Elderly.
District and Municipal Hospitals should have a special Geriatric Ward with latest facilities and all PHCs should provide special attention to Elderly. PHC standard to be improved with regular supply of drugs and medical professionals on lines suggested by WHO.  We also demand fast implementation of National Programme for the Healthcare of the Elderly (NPHCE) started in February 2011 by Govt. of India.  All Universities in the State should start Post-Graduate Diploma/Degree Courses in Geriatrics.  Undergraduate medical and nursing courses should include essential training in Geriatrics. 
12. Declaration of Comprehensive Policy on Dementia and Alzheimer's.
Dementia/Alzheimer’s are non-curable brain diseases affecting Senior Citizens with memory loss and behavior problems. As per ‘National Dementia Report 2010' submitted to Government of India, it is estimated that 3% of Senior Citizens suffer from some form of Dementia in State of Maharashtra and there will be around 100% increase in number of people with Dementia by 2026. So there is urgent need to form a Task Force of Eminent Psychiatrist, Neurologist, Gerontologist, Geriatricians, other medical professionals and representatives from Senior Citizens Organization and ARDSI –National organization working for Dementia. We promise government to extend all our cooperation for addressing this urgent Health issue of our Senior Citizens before it’s too late. 
13. Kindly get 12 points, as brought out in my letter dt 12-6-11 addressed to you by name attended to very early.                                                                                                                       

We wish to point out that senior citizens comprise of around 10% of the total population and around 13% of the electorate and if you consider those who actually go for voting, we are 22% of effective electorate. You would agree that no Government can continue to ignore us for decades, at a stretch. 
Sir, we seek your support for the basic rights of Senior Citizens of the Sate and we hope the Government of Maharashtra will take due note of these demands and help Senior Citizens to have a happy evening of their life.  
Your positive and proactive approach will help the Elderly in the State to live in peace, security and dignity. We request you to give reply to this Memorandum very early in terms of para 66 of Office Manual, extract reproduced below.

Yours sincerely,


Extracts of para 66 of the Manual of Office Procedure.
66. Prompt response to letters received-
(1) Each communication received from the Member of Parliament, a member of public, a recognized Association  or a Public Body will be acknowledged within 15 days, followed by a reply within 15 days of acknowledge sent.
(2) Where (i) delay is anticipated in sending final reply or (ii) information has to be obtained from another Ministry or another office, an interim reply will be sent within a month (from date of receipt) indicating the possible date by which a final reply can be given.
3) If any such communication is wrongly addressed to a department, it will be transferred promptly (within a week) to appropriate department under intimation to the party concerned.
(4) Where the request of a member of Public can not be acceded to for any reason, reasons for not acceding to such a request should be given.
(5) As far as possible, requests from members of Public, should be looked at from the user’s point of view and not solely from the point of view of what may be administratively convenient.

Senior Citizens Solidarity Day-16-8-11.

Website: Email:  Phone: M 09821732855.
M.V.Ruparelia, A 503 Rashmi Utsav, Near Jangid Estate & Vijay Park, Mira Road (East), Dist. Thane-Maharashtra-401107.
                                                                                   Date: 12th August, 2011
Dr. Man Mohan Singh,
Honorable Prime Minister of India,
South Block, New Delhi – 110001.

Mananivar Pradhan Mantri Ji,
Sub:  Memorandum for Senior Citizens Issues.
Ref: Senior Citizens National Solidarity Day: 16th August 2011.

This is an appeal on behalf of 10 crores Elder Persons (60 +), majority of whom are indigent, underfed, insecure and unorganized, craving for your immediate attention and action.
2. We whole heartedly appreciate the following recent decisions of the Government and request YOU to get them implemented by INERT & LETHARGIC STATES & UTs, which have not even adopted National Policy, 99 even after 12 full years:-
i) Paying Rs 200 p.m. (though this amount is a mockery of Human beings) to BPL Senior Citizens of 60 to 65 years & Rs 500 to BPL of 80 & above.
ii) Giving the advantage of Income Tax Exemption limit to Senior Citizens of 60 to 65 years and increasing this limit to Rs 5 lakhs for those of 80 & above.
iii) Notifying the National Programme for Health Care of Elderly (NPHCE).
3. You may be aware that United Nations Economic & Social Commission for Asia Specific (ESCAP), Bangkok is watching the progress of action taken by the Governments  for Welfare of Elders and has requested all member countries to advise them by 30-6-11, the progress report for 19 Questionnaire in terms of The Economic and Social Council resolution 2010/14 for their Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing (MIPAA REVIEW), 2011. This process calls for Governments to consult with Civil Society9Organizations of Senior Citizens) on how their Policies & Programmes are being implemented. The United Nations believes that feedback from the grassroots level is the only way for successful policies to be made. You will be surprised to know that no action is taken on various provisions made in NPOP,99 by various Central Ministries and STATE GOVERNMENTS/UTs, even after 12 YEARS, as would be seen from details given in enclosed statement. A Review Committee was nominated by Ministry of S.J.& E. on 28-1-10 for assessing the present status of various issues concerning Senior Citizens in general; implementation of NPOP, 99 in particular and drafting a New Policy by 31-5-10. The Committee gave its Draft Policy only on 30-3-11 to Minister of S.J.& E.after 14 months during which time,  no action was taken by any Ministry/State/UTs on existing Policy and may not take till New Policy is finalized & notified. The Draft has now been put on their Web Site for comments from Citizens by 30-9-11( 6 months wait again)  after which this may be finalized and declared. It is given in writing by various Ministries under RTI that their representatives attending the Meetings of Review Committee have not given any notes of proceedings for any action required nor they have received any Draft Policy as in May,11 and even the dealing Directorate of Ministry of S.J.& E. has not received any Information/Minutes from the Member Secretary of the Review Committee, who was  Joint Secretary of their Ministry for proceedings from time to time. In view of such position, your directive to the Nodal Ministry & other Ministries to give due importance and target for the finalization and implementation of the New Policy is solicited.
4. The First & Foremost Action from your side is requested to establish a separate full fledged Department exclusively for Senior Citizens, as the present Directorate dealing with various subjects is not able to devote any time to the issues pertaining to Senior Citizens. You will be surprised to know that Inter-Ministerial Committee Meetings for coordinating action by various Ministries are not held regularly even once in a year and no follow up is done; Meetings of NCOP with representatives of Senior Citizens are also not held, as required and there is absolutely no control/coordination with States/UTs and other Stake Holders like Media, Charitable Trusts, Private Hospitals; NGOs, Corporate Sector etc by Nodal Directorate and concerned Ministries. Position at State/UTs level is still worst, as no Directorate/Nodal officers are exclusively nominated. Separate Directorates at Central & State/UTs level may please be given immediately.
5. Next important issue requiring your directive is about formation of Autonomous National Association of Senior Citizens as per para 97 of NPOP,99 or to recognize the existing Associations for negotiations & sending them various directives from all Ministries for matters affecting Senior Citizens at Central; State/UTs & Municipal/Panchayat levels for information of Senior Citizens. To-day, there is no machinery to listen the voices of Senior Citizens or to get information of what Government is doing for their Elders. Even the Nodal Ministry has no touch with any of the existing Registered Associations of Senior Citizens and none from Registered Associations was nominated on Review Committee. Separate Web Site for Senior Citizens is also absolutely necessary and may be provided.
6. You will agree with the fact that elders have waited for years on end to get attention from our rulers but all that we have received is indifference towards our issues. While we are keen to play our role in the development of our Country and the activities for the welfare of community, we also demand that our concerns must be addressed.

7.      Last year on 16th August 2010, we (JAC) had organized All India ‘Senior Citizens National PROTEST Day’. Joint Action Committee (JAC) of Senior Citizens was formed by 23 Organization/ Federations, Associations, NGOs working for Senior Citizens to protest against continuous neglect and ignorance by the central & state government. This year too on 16th August,2011, we have planned ‘ Senior Citizens National Solidarity Day ‘ to once again highlight our issues and to demand concrete action from Central and State governments.

8.      We request the Government to consider the following pending demands in addition to action on various paras of NPOP, 99 as per Statement enclosed urgently and concede them:

i)             Implementation of NPOP 1999 / National Policy on Senior Citizens  (NPOS) 2011 by central and all states in India by fixing a time bound Action Plan in terms of Para 93 of NPOP,99 & Chief Information Commissioner, Delhi `s orders dt 27-6-08 vide his no. 2701/Senior Citizens/(A)/2008 in Case no. C I C/MA/A/ 2008/00645 to Ministry Of Social Justice & Empowerment to outline the plan of action in a time bound manner for the larger benefit of older persons. It would not be out of place to mention that even in most progressive State like Maharashtra, National Policy is not yet adopted or notified and State Council not constituted even after 12 years.

ii)            Implementation of ‘The Maintenance & Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens ACT -2007’: The Maintenance & Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens ACT -2007 has not been implemented so far by most of the States. Many States have only notified it but Act has not been operationalised. Generally rules under it have not been formed. Awareness about it is lacking both in public and administration. Details of Tribunals should be given wide publicity in local Newspapers & TV Channels. Immediate steps should be taken to Pan India implementation of the act for benefit of senior citizens.

iii)           National Commission for Senior Citizens:
As the Longevity is increasing, there is dramatic rise in number of people above 60 yrs. Today,  there are around 100 million Senior Citizens in India . To address various issues and grievances, especially elder abuse cases, a National Commission for Senior Citizens on the lines of Human Right and Women commission is requested with representation form NGOs and Senior Citizens Organizations.

iv)           To declare Comprehensive National policy for Dementia and Alzheimer’s

v)            Inclusion of Ageing in Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR)  and reservation of minimum 10% of CSR budget for welfare projects of Senior Citizens

vi)           Specialized Courses in Social Science & Medical Colleges in Gerontology and Geriatrics respectively.

vii)         Fast track Courts for speedy, time-bound disposal of pending cases of Senior Citizens in all Courts.
viii)        Uniform Old Age Pension Scheme for all Senior Citizens in BPL in all states

ix)           Fast Implementation of National Programme for the Healthcare of the Elderly (NPHCE) started in February 2011

x)             Charter of Rights and Responsibilities for Senior Citizens.

xi)           One free attendant to be permitted to accompany the oldest old Senior Citizens [80+]:
The 80+ Senior Citizens usually suffer with age related physical disabilities and require the help of an attendant. We request that an attendant may be permitted to travel free with them to assist and help them. Similar facility is provided to the physically disabled and the Freedom Fighters.

xii)         Provision of separate Compartment for Senior Citizens in local trains:
The local trains are often so much crowded that it becomes impossible for Senior Citizens to get into the train. In view of the same problem, separate compartments are provided for the disabled and women. We request that same facility may be provided exclusively for Senior Citizens also.
Though in Mumbai suburban  trains restricted time reservation [10 PM to 5 PM] is available, yet it is not very useful because it is not possible to get in from the common entrance. Therefore, we request that a small compartment of the same capacity of 14 seats reserved at present reserved for senior citizens in 2 compartments should be provided for the whole day with reservation of some seats in all First Class Coaches.

xiii)        Provision of escalators on important railway stations and ramps on others:
In one of the previous Rail Budget, there was an announcement that escalators/lifts would be installed on stations but this facility is yet to be installed at most of the stations. It is often a torture for senior Citizens to climb up the platform bridges with luggage. Provision of this facility will be a great boon for the Senior Citizens, elderly women, the sick and the disabled. Where escalators cannot be installed, provision of ramps may be considered. We request you to seek for escalators/ lifts/ramps on all Railway Stations.

xiv)        50% Concession to all Senior Citizens in Railways:
Female Sr. Citizens (50+) have been availing 50% concession in rail fares for the last 2-3 years, while the male Senior Citizens have been given at 40% in this budget. We request you to please remove the differentiation of gender and grant 50% concession to all Senior Citizens [60+]. We also request you to get a small separate coach in Suburban Trains in all Metro Cities and reservation of some seats in First Class Coaches of Suburban & Metro Trains.

xv)         District hospitals/PHC should have a special Geriatric Ward with latest facilities.

xvi)        In NRHM /NUHM special provision for Senior Citizens

xvii)       Decent old age homes with Public-Private mode for the benefit of seniors at reasonable charges should be promoted.

xviii)     Free Home for Destitute should be established in all districts.

xix)        Special attention/schemes/programmes for Rural Elderly, Tribal Elderly, Transgender Elderly, Destitute Elderly, Women Elderly and 80 + population.

9.      We hope your good office will take due note of our above said demands and also seek your intervention with regards to immediate implementation of comprehensive NPOP by Central government and State government/UTs & Implementation of Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act (as passed by Loksabha in Dec 2007) in Maharashtra and Pan India.

10.  Your positive and proactive approach will help our Elderly to live in peace, security and dignity.

11.  We shall be thankful, if reply is given early in terms of Para 66 of Office Manual.(Extract on last page of the Statement attached)

Yours Sincerely,

Copy Forwarded to Shri Pranab Mukherji, Minister of Finance, North Block, New Delhi-110001.
Copy Forwarded to Shri Mukul Wasnik, Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment, Shastri Bhawan, New Delhi-110001.
Copy Forwarded to Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad, Minister of Health & F.W., NirmanBhawan, New Delhi, 110011.
Copy Forwarded to Shri Dinesh Trivedi, Minister of Railways, Rail Bhawan, New Delhi-110 001.
Copy Forwarded to Shri  Kapil Sibal,  Minister for Education, Shastri Bhawan, New Delhi-110001.
Copy Forwarded to Shri P. Chidambaram, Minister for Home Affairs, North Block, New Delhi-110001.
Copy Forwarded to Kum. Selja, Minister of Housing, Nirman Bhawan, New Delhi-110008.
Copy Forwarded to Shri Prithvi Raj Chahuan, Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Mantralaya, Mumbai- 400032

7.      They are requested to give reply early in terms of Para 66 of Office Manual for items pertaining to them. .(Extract on last page of the Statement attached)

Statement showing Details of Action yet to be taken on Various Paras of NPOP,99 by various Ministries, even after 12 Years, though Each Ministry/Stake Holder is required to implement all aspects concerning them as per Para 93 of NPOP,99:
Ministry Of Finance: Paras 24 to 32, 36, 63 & 93.
1.      Para 24: Different income segments for some level of income security in old age are not decided so far. Classifying BPL Senior Citizens as per 13 parameters fixed By Rural Ministry for their requirements should not be applied for meager payment of Pension of Rs 200. Level of income for all categories of Senior Citizens viz BPL, APL and effluents may be decided, keeping in view GDP & Concessions to be given.
2.      Para 25: Rate of monthly Pension not revised at intervals to deflate the inflation with periodical increase as per Dearness Index.
3.      Para 27:  The base of pension coverage has not been expanded for those above BPL.
4.    Para 28: Taxation Policies have not been liberalized to cover exemption for Medical & Nursing Care of Elderly nor for Transport & Support Service needed at home. Sec 80 DDB provides rebate for treatment for very rare & very serious prescribed diseases. These prescribed diseases do not include present life-style chronic diseases like heart problems, hyper tension; diabetes, mental disease like Parkinson, Alzheimer’s, Dementia etc  - All these should be included. As all Senior Citizens are suffering from some chronic ailment or other due to ageing, this provision should apply to all medical expenses and not restricted to present prescribed rare diseases only. As medical treatment is very costly, this limit of 60000 should separately apply to self and dependent spouse. As ailments due to ageing are beyond control of Senior Citizens, this is a disability and all provisions for Disability and Handicapped may also be applied to Senior Citizens. Govt should exempt expenditure incurred by children/relative for Senior citizens healthcare – insurance, medicines, surgery, diagnostics etc for diseases brought out above from Income Tax.
5.       No tax relief is given to Sons/Daughters for co-residing and spending on Health Care of Parents. The exemption limit for Senior citizens has been marginally raised by 10,000 from the current Rs2.4 lakh to Rs2.5 lakh.  It should be raised to minimum 5 lakh.
6.      Para 29: Long Term Saving Instruments with higher rate of interest to reduce likely erosion of purchasing power of Senior Citizens are not created. For financial protection to Elderly Community in this era of Soft Interest Regime, 9% Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme was introduced in August. 2004 through the Budget announcements. During the intervening periods, there has been huge increase in cost of living with the result that 90% of Sr. Citizens, who, sans pension benefits, have to survive on interest returns on their investments of meagre savings, have been experiencing innumerable difficulties in the maintenance of their livelihood. Rate of interest of this Scheme is not increased, though all Banks have raised the rate of interest on fixed deposits much above 9%. There is an imperative need to extend them adequate financial protection by modifying and enriching the Scheme as 11% Senior Citizens’ Savings Scheme. We therefore, reiterate that the interest rate of the Scheme should be increased to 11% or more and it be continued with new arrangements for payment before maturity within one year. Higher 2% rate of interest on Term Deposits : Although all Banks were advised by R.B.I. in April 2001, to pay half to one percent additional interest on term deposits, no Bank is paying one percent additional interest and trying to comply with R.B.I. directives within the range of half percent additional interest. In fact even 1% higher interest is not adequate to provide the desired protection to Senior Citizens and it is requested that there should be provision of additional 2% or more interest on their term deposits to reduce likely erosion of purchasing power. The benefit of additional interests should be on all types of deposits to fulfill the requirements of financial protection to Senior Citizens.
7.      Para 31: No action to create income-generating activities for Senior Citizens is taken. Age related discriminations for credit marketing, loans for various purposes etc are not removed.
8.    Para 36: No action is taken to provide health insurance to Senior Citizens of different income groups. K. S. Sastry Committee (appointed in Nov 07 to address the problems of Health Insurance for the Sr Citizens) gave its recommendations to Finance Ministry on 26-5-08. IRDA gave their final recommendations on 25-5-09 but no action is taken by Finance Ministry to give effect to these recommendations. Though mandated in para 36 of NPOP,99, no relief is given for Health Insurance so far. We find that mandatory community Health Insurance scheme will be the most economical and satisfactory solution of this problem. It is suggested that either improved Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna [RSBY] or Aarogyasri type [of Andhra Pradesh] scheme should be launched in the Country covering both BPL and APL population.
9.      Para 63: Welfare Fund for Senior Citizens is not yet set up.
10.  Para 93: No action plans are being prepared nor any Annual Progress Reports are prepared. No machinery is laid down to facilitate budgetary provisions required for implementation of entire NPOP, 99 from year to year. Minimum 10% of total Budget Provision for Welfare Works for various sections of Society should be earmarked and allotted for Welfare of Senior Citizens.
11.  Tax deduction at source [TDS] : It is a fact that Sr. Citizens are often put to lot of mental stress and confusion as they are required to approach often repeatedly Income Tax offices for refund of tax deducted at source despite their furnishing “H” form to the concerned authorities/Banks who still deduct that through inadvertence and oversight. It is therefore suggested for exclusion of Senior Citizens Community from purview of TAX Deduction at Source. Under such arrangement, the taxpaying Sr. Citizens would obviously include the interest amount in their taxable incomes.
Ministry Of Health & F.W. : Paras 33 to 47:
12.  Very strict & disciplined Monitoring Machinery to get various provisions of ambitious NPHCE should be created. Continuous reiterating of instructions & chasing will help early implementation.
13.  Para 34: The goal of NPOP, 99 is to provide affordable health services, very heavily subsidized for the poor & graded system for other Senior Citizens. Action to provide subsidy and framing rules for that has to be initiated by Health Ministry and not left to others. For providing judicious mix of Public Health Services, health insurance etc, Health Ministry has to pursue with other Ministries, Non Profit Organizations, Trusts, Charities, Private Sector for Health Benefits to Senior Citizens. No instructions are ever issued to NGOs, Trusts, Charities, Private Sector Hospitals, States/UTs etc, resulting in non-implementation of these paras of the Policy. Para 93 of the Policy clearly lays down that each Ministry has to implement each aspect pertaining to them and Nodal Ministry is to coordinate only and can not be expected to issue your aspects with others.
14.  Para 36: Health Insurance is also an aspect of Health Ministry and requires to be chased & got implemented by sincere & continuous pursuing with various Stake Holders.
15.  Para 37to 39, 41,: These aspects also need issuing of instructions, forming rules/procedure for giving grants etc in coordination with the concerned Ministries/Departments.
16.  Para 40: Medical Colleges etc are required to be advised by Health Ministry, though Colleges may be under Education Department. Health Ministry is the Guardian/Father Figure of Senior Citizens for all aspects of Health requirements. Each aspect laid down in this para is very important and sincere efforts are requested.
17.  Paras 41 to 44: It is only Health Ministry, which can get these provisions implemented, even by pursuing with other concerned Stake Holders.
18.  Para 45: Action in coordination with Ministry of Education, Media & Private Sector has to be initiated by Health Ministry and provisions of this para got implemented.
19.  Para 46: Here also, Health Ministry has to ensure that proper provisions are made in National Mental Health Programme for Senior Citizens and implemented in time bound schedule.
Ministry Of Housing: Paras 48 to 54.
20.   Para 48 to 54: No action appears to have been taken nor any instructions issued on any of the provisions of these paras.                            Ministry Of Education: Paras 55 to 58:
21.         Para 55 to 58: No action appears to have been taken nor any instructions issued on any of the provisions of these paras.
     Ministry Of Social Justice & Empowerment: Paras  24,25, 27, 59 to 64, 68 to 98.
22.   Para 24, 25 & 27: There is no necessity of classifying BPL Senior Citizens as per 13 parameters of Rural Ministry for simple purpose of paying meager Pension. This work should be taken over by Ministry of S.J.& E. and different income segments for some level of income security in old age got decided in consultation with Ministry of Finance as laid down in para 24 of Policy.
23.  Para 59: No action is taken to identify more vulnerable and those staying without family support etc. This action is very important and may please be got done on priority basis for providing the needed welfare services.
24.  Para 60 to 62 & 64: No action is taken to communicate with voluntary organizations, NGOs, Private Sector etc  and no scheme to assist and give grants-in-aid etc to such organizations is yet formulated, as done for 16 schemes under Integrated Programme.
25.  Para 63: Though Welfare Fund is to be created by Ministry of Finance, Nodal Ministry must pursue this matter vigorously and get Welfare Fund set up for various purposes.
26.  Paras 68 & 69: No specific instructions are issued by Nodal Ministry to all concerned Departments and as such many have not implemented these instructions e.g. Banks, many Hospitals, most of Post Offices, Private & Public Organizations, where there are big ques for making monthly payments for electricity, telephone bills etc. Such instructions may please be issued & reiterated periodically.
27.  Para 71: No action is taken to ensure that information of all Stake Holders including States/UTs is included 7 updated periodically in Web Site of Nodal Ministry. There is a need for Separate Web Site for Senior Citizens.
28.  Paras 72 to 77: No action is taken to communicate with any NGOs, Trusts, Charities, Trade Unions, Professional Bodies etc for any of these provisions nor policy decided to give grant-in aid etc to such important Stake Holders, though issuing instructions do not require any huge funds. This may be done now very early.
29.  Para 78 & 79: No action is taken on these very important provisions even after 12 years. This may be expedite now.
30.  Paras 80 to 87: No action is taken. Please, expedite the action in consultation with concerned Ministries & Media and issue comprehensive instructions to all concerned Stake Holders very early.
31.  Para 88-89: No communication is made either by Nodal Ministry or Ministry of Information & Broadcasting with Media for these provisions. Kindly, pursue the implementation of these provisions and stress on Media to give some space regularly/periodically in all Newspapers & ½ hour slot in TV Media every Week or periodically for various aspects of life of Senior Citizens.
32.  Para 90: Absolutely no action is taken by Nodal Ministry to ensure that various features of Policy remain in constant Public Focus. Even advertisements twice in a year on Ist Oct for World Elders` Day and 15th June on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day are forgotten!! No State/UT also bother about any aspects of Policy and do not give any advertisements for public focus!!
33.  Para 91: No efforts have been made by Nodal Ministry to collaborate with Organizations of Senior Citizens, even though represented to recognize the registered associations of senior citizens for continuous dialogue and keeping them informed about good work done by government for welfare of senior citizens!! This may be looked in to sincerely & seriously and provisions implemented early. This does not require any Budget Provisions!!
34.  Para 92: No bureau of Senior Citizens is set up. Meetings of NCOP & Inter-Ministerial Committees are held regularly to achieve implementation of any provisions of the Policy!! There is absolutely no coordination with State/UTs either for implementation or for monitoring!!
35.  Para 93: Factual position as per information received under RTI is that no Ministry prepares Five Year or Annual Plans. This is not done by Nodal Ministry also regularly, no targets are ever fixed, responsibility never fixed or even thought of and not got implemented by Stake Holders.
36.  Para 95: Nothing is known about such training!
37.  Para 96: Detailed working with number of meeting to be held and machinery to implement the decisions of such Council may be laid down in detail.
38.  Para 97: No action even to initiate such NAOP at any level in 12 years nor existing Associations are recognized and given some status for negotiations etc.
39.  Para 98: No instructions are issued for this by Nodal Ministry or any State/UTs.
Ministry Of Home Affairs: Paras 65 to 67:
40.         Though action is taken & provisions made in Maintenance Act, 2007, it is necessary to have Monitoring Cell and periodical reiteration of all provisions, as safety of Senior Citizens is very important.
Ministry Of Railways: Various Paras:
41.          Para 35: To expand the health services in various Railways including other independent Units for preventive, rehabilitative and geriatric care facilities for retired employees.
42.   Para 39: To issue instructions for separate ques for retired employees and to ensure its implementation by monitoring and/or reiterating instructions. Geriatric wards are to be set up in all Railway Hospitals.
43.   Para 40, 41, 86: To issue instructions for training of Railway Doctors & other Para-Medical staff for proper care and respect for retired employees. To provide Mobile care and hospice care for bed ridden employees in various hospitals.
44.    Para 42 & 43: To issue instructional/guidance/nutritional material on self care of retired employees.
45.    Para 44 & 45: To issue instructions to promote healthy ageing amongst the retired staff. To issue instructions to treat their retired elders properly and to educate them for healthy ageing and to provide facilities of yoga, meditation etc. There should be proper education programmes for retired staff and they should be taken on Advisory Committees to bring out difficulties faced by them in getting treatment, keeping in view the spirit of NPOP, 99. Repeated orientation training and instructions to treat retired staff with respect by Doctors and staff are necessary.
46.    Para 46: To provide Counseling facilities in various hospitals. 
47.    Para 68: a) To persuade Railways to give 50% concession to all Senior Citizens,  as by Air & State Road Transport without distinguishing between Gents & Ladies.
 b) No quota is fixed for reservation for Senior Citizens in any of the trains, though large quotas are fixed for ladies, handicaps, military & VIPs. Senior Citizens above 70-75 are more vulnerable than handicaps and ladies.
c) In suburban trains also, not only some compartments but entire trains are reserved for ladies but Senior Citizens are denied a small separate coach, as given to handicaps. With the deteriorating health condition, when they are required to go to doctors, consultants, Hospitals etc in the morning for pathological tests, they are facing hardships and as such, they should be provided separate coach or permitted to go in coaches/trains reserved for ladies & handicaps.
d) Railways are having large number of Holiday Homes, Rest Houses, and Convalescent Homes etc and not given concessions in rent though provision of this para provides for concession to Senior Citizens.

48.   Para 70: Railways are having a big Publicity Department but no instructions are issued by Ministry to  Railways to highlight the issues pertaining  to their retired staff every year on 1st October and call them on that occasion for Get-Together and meeting each other and know about their problems etc. Existing Welfare Branches at Ministry as well as local levels can be instructed to do needful, as envisaged in various paras of the Policy.
49.   Para 73: Railways are having well organized Personnel Department with Efficient Negotiating Machinery. They may be pursued to have continuous dialogue with NGOs doing welfare of Senior Citizens of Railways and recognize/encourage Associations of Senior Citizens of Railways by giving accommodation, place for their meetings etc. They have large number of Welfare Centres through out the Country and these can be allowed for retired staff & their Association of Senior Citizens.
50.   Para 76: Railways can set up voluntary programmes for participation of retired staff in their various programmes, celebrations of Railway Week etc. They can also provide Colonies for Retired Staff with basic facilities.
51.    Para 78 & 79: Railway work is specialized one and retired staff is well trained to tackle various works efficiently. Railways need trained staff in different circumstances and also during vacation period, there is lot of absenteeism. Retired staff should be engaged freely. Instructions should be issued by Ministry of Railways to utilize capable retired staff and enrich & update their knowledge.
52.   Para 93: Annual Plan & Five Year Plan for implementing various provisions of the Policy are required to be prepared.
Extracts of para 66 of the Manual of Office Procedure.
66. Prompt response to letters received-
(1) Each communication received from the Member of Parliament, a member of public, a recognized Association  or a Public Body will be acknowledged within 15 days, followed by a reply within 15 days of acknowledge sent.
(2) Where (i) delay is anticipated in sending final reply or (ii) information has to be obtained from another Ministry or another office, an interim reply will be sent within a month (from date of receipt) indicating the possible date by which a final reply can be given.
3) If any such communication is wrongly addressed to a department, it will be transferred promptly (within a week) to appropriate department under intimation to the party concerned.
(4) Where the request of a member of Public can not be acceded to for any reason, reasons for not acceding to such a request should be given.
(5) As far as possible, requests from members of Public, should be looked at from the user’s point of view and not solely from the point of view of what may be administratively convenient.